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A Glimpse At The Critical Role Development Has Played In LA Kings’ Championships

Former NHL defenseman and general manager Mike O’Connell (standing) instructs LA Kings prospects during the team’s 2014 Development Camp on July 8, 2014, at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California.
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

2014 DEVELOPMENT CAMP: Frozen Royalty begins its coverage of the Los Angeles Kings’ 2014 Development Camp with a story on what the team is trying to accomplish during their annual camp for their young prospects and the impact their development staff has had on the team’s success. ALSO: listen to an audio interview with former Kings left wing Mike Donnelly, now on the team’s development and scouting staffs.


EL SEGUNDO, CA — The hockey world is now in what should probably be known as The Dreaded Lull, that period between the height of unrestricted free agent signings on July 1, and the start of National Hockey League training camps in mid-September, a period when it seems like everything related to the game has been sucked into a black hole.

The result: hockey fans are bored out of their minds, clamoring for any little tidbit of something hockey-related to help them survive the two-and-a-half months before training camps open.

Something that helps fans cope is that NHL teams now have development camps for their young prospects in July and August, giving fans and hockey media alike something to chew on during The Dreaded Lull, and the Los Angeles Kings are no exception.

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View From The Ice After LA Kings Win 2014 Stanley Cup Championship – Photos

LA Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell and members of his family pose for a photo with the Stanley Cup after the Kings won the 2014 Stanley Cup Championship at Staples Center in Los Angeles on June 13, 2014.
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

 

LOS ANGELES — After the Los Angeles Kings won the 2014 Stanley Cup Championship on June 13, and after the players had skated with hockey’s Holy Grail, Frozen Royalty was on the ice to speak with the players, President/General Manager Dean Lombardi, and others.

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LA Kings Justin Williams Emerged As Clear-Cut Choice For Conn Smythe Trophy

LA Kings right wing Justin Williams (right) receives the Conn Smythe Trophy from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman (left)
after the Kings won the 2014 Stanley Cup at
Staples Center in Los Angeles on June 13, 2014.
(click above to view larger image
Photo: Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images and
the Los Angeles Kings

LOS ANGELES — Heading into the 2014 Stanley Cup Final, Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty and right wing Justin Williams appeared to have put some distance between themselves and a small handful of teammates who were also in the conversation for the Conn Smythe Trophy, awarded annually to the Most Valuable Player in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. But once the Kings won the 2014 Stanley Cup in Game 5 on defenseman Alec Martinez’ goal at 14:43 of the second overtime period, the choice was clear: the trophy had to go to veteran right wing Justin Williams.

Indeed, Williams was the best choice for the Conn Smythe Trophy, even though the Kings got outstanding performances from several players. But his play in the Stanley Cup Final, when he scored two goals and added five assists for seven points, with a +2 plus/minus rating and one game-winning goal, clinched the Conn Smythe Trophy, as he led all players in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final in scoring.

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LA Kings And NY Rangers: 2014 Stanley Cup Final Preview/Prediction

The Stanley Cup
(click above to view larger image
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — After eight months, the National Hockey League has finally reached the peak of its crescendo, with the New York Rangers here on the left coast to face-off against the Los Angeles Kings in 2014’s quest for hockey’s version of the Holy Grail, the Stanley Cup.

Players, head coaches and general managers of both teams met the media on June 3 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, where the players spent a lot of time analyzing their opponent.

“[The Kings are] a big team,” said Rangers forward Brad Richards. “Straightforward, experienced, and they obviously don’t give up. We’ve seen that over the last few years, and especially this year. You know that their will is there. We’re going to have to get to that, and match that. After that, there’s not a lot of surprises. It’s straightforward hockey, and they’re going to come. Besides that, we’ll see where it goes.”

“They’re obviously a very, very good team,” said Rangers forward Chris Kreider. “That’s why they are where they are, at this point in the season. That’s why they’ve had so much success over the past few years.”

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